Press Release: Villagers Protest Giant Billboards Being Erected by Hotel Gansevoort
The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation was joined today by hundreds of angry neighborhood residents to protest the erection of two giant billboards on Hudson Street by the Hotel Gansevoort, on the border of the Meatpacking District and Greenwich Village. The signs are 670 and 1200 sq. ft., and reach 75 feet or nearly 8 stories in height. The billboards frames have been erected but the advertising signs have not yet appeared. In response to several possible violations of signage regulations raised by GVSHP, the legality of the signs is currently under review by the City. Advertising billboards are not allowed in most of the Meatpacking District, and GVSHP has urged the City to force the removal of the illegal signs. Van Wagner, the sign company which will rent the billboards for the Hotel Gansevoort, has said that the signs will fetch more than $1,000,000 a year for the hotel.
“These mega-billboards make about as much sense here as a cobblestoned street would in Las Vegas. They will turn a beautiful historic neighborhood into something that looks like a freeway off-ramp. We call upon the Hotel Gansevoort to think about something – anything – other than the $1 million a year they will make off these signs, come to their senses, and take them down,” said Andrew Berman, Executive Director for the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. “The Hotel Gansevoort profits in every way it can from this neighborhood – from its name to the views it enjoys over our low-rise buildings, which remain thanks to the landmark protections we fought for. Their eight-story high billboards, however, will destroy everything that remains wonderful about these neighborhoods, and turn them into backdrops for their crass self-promotion and profit,” he added.
Protestors distributed flyers to hotel patrons and other Meat Market visitors and asked them to tell the hotel to take down the billboards.